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Anemia Of Chronic Disease: An Adaptive Response?

Date:
August 12, 2008
Source:
Canadian Medical Association Journal
Summary:
The anemia of chronic disease may be a beneficial, adaptive response to the underlying disease, rather than a negative effect of the illness, postulates an analysis article in CMAJ.

The anemia of chronic disease may be a beneficial, adaptive response to the underlying disease, rather than a negative effect of the illness, postulates an analysis article in CMAJ.

The authors argue that anemia may be beneficial to patients with inflammatory disease, and advocate restraint in treating mild to moderate forms of anemia.

"The general assumption is that anemia is a disorder and that patients would be better off without it," state the authors.

However, they suggest that anemia of chronic disease has the characteristics of an adaptive physiologic response, and their review of the literature shows that mortality appears to increase when treatment, given to raise hemoglobin levels, overrides mild to moderate anemia of chronic disease.

They call for better characterization of the cause of individual patients' anemia in future trials of anemia treatment, and careful monitoring of adverse outcomes, including mortality, if patients with anemia of chronic disease are included in such trials.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Canadian Medical Association Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Ryan Zarychanski, MD and Donald S. Houston, MD PhD. Anemia of chronic disease: A harmful disorder or an adaptive, beneficial response? Canadian Medical Association Journal, 2008; 179 (4): 333 DOI: 10.1503/cmaj.071131

Cite This Page:

Canadian Medical Association Journal. "Anemia Of Chronic Disease: An Adaptive Response?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811195309.htm>.
Canadian Medical Association Journal. (2008, August 12). Anemia Of Chronic Disease: An Adaptive Response?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811195309.htm
Canadian Medical Association Journal. "Anemia Of Chronic Disease: An Adaptive Response?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080811195309.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

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